Friday, August 13, 2004

Book Review: Final Gifts

Understanding the Special Awareness, Needs and Communications of the Dying

by Maggie Callanan and Patricia Kelley

This book, by two hospice nurses, is a beautifully written collection of stories about the sometimes cryptic communications people who are dying try to tell their loved ones. Towards the end of life, people can appear to be somewhat confused. However, even in this seemingly altered mental state, they may be trying to convey important messages. In addition to being moved by each and every story in the book, I gleaned new insight about the needs of people in their last days of life.

For anyone who loves someone who is dying or who works with people at the end of life, this is a must read. The chapters stand alone and can thus be read in any order and at any pace. The last chapter gives specific tips for maintaining authentic, open and loving dialogue with family members or patients who are getting ready to let go.

Highly recommended.

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